‘My body got a shock,’ says Naomi Osaka after withdrawing from Melbourne semi-final

Naomi Osaka in action

Veronika Kudermetova advanced to the Melbourne Summer Set 1 final without having to hit a ball after Naomi Osaka pulled out of their semi-final due to injury.

Playing competitive tennis this week for the first time since last year’s US Open, Osaka beat Alize Cornet, Maryna Zanevska and Andrea Petkovic in her opening three matches.

However, the four-time Grand Slam winner revealed that the intensity of the matches was a shock to her system while she was also struggling with an abdominal injury.

“Sad to withdraw due to injury from my match today, my body got a shock from playing back to back intense matches after the break I took,” she wrote on Twitter.

“Thank you for all the love this past week Red heart I’ll try to rest up and I’ll see you soon!”

Osaka is likely to next feature at the Australian Open, which begins on January 17, with the Japanese star set to defend the title she won last year when she defeated Jennifer Brady in two sets.

Kudermetova will face second seed Simona Halep in the final after the Romanian beat Chinese teenager Zheng Qinwen 6-3, 6-2.

“I’m really happy that I can play the final for the first tournament of the year,” Halep said. “I’m feeling good, and I’m happy with the way I played.”